But here’s a few I think are particularly interesting:
subgroup had very long snouts and slender limbs, and may have been wading
fish-eaters like modern herons. They include some of the smallest
known raptors like Buitreraptor, and also one of the largest, Austroraptor.
The microraptorians include the “four-winged” gliders like Microraptor. We also know about the feather colors of some of them – Microraptor itself was a glossy iridescent black, while Sinornithosaurus was a mixture of reddish-brown, yellow, black and grey.
Fossilized eggshells have been found associated with a specimen of Deinonychus, in a position that suggests it may have been brooding on a nest when it died. It was also the main subject of a study on the uses of raptors’ distinctive sickle claws – they were probably used for holding down small prey while eating it alive.
Utahraptor was possibly the largest known raptor at over 6m long, and also had some weird body proportions
compared to its close relatives – a bulky body, short tail, stocky
limbs, and an oddly curved lower jaw. A big slab containing at least six
skeletons is currently being excavated and studied (supported by crowdfunding!), so more discoveries are still waiting to be made.
Another large raptor, Dakotaraptor, had quill knobs similar to those seen in Velociraptor,
showing that even the “giant” raptors still had well-developed feathers. Two different
adult body shapes are seen in its fossils, which might be evidence of
Plotosaurus at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles.
Plotosaurus was a genus of Mosasaur from late Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) California. It has two known species, P. bennisoni (the species mounted in the photo) and P. tuckeri.
Plotosaurus is also considered to be one of the most derived Mosasaurs, and perhaps one of the fastest swimmers as well. It’s caudal (tail) fin was larger in comparison to it’s body size than other Mosasaurs, it’s flippers were a lot thinner, and it’s body was a lot more streamlined.
Perhaps better known by its colorful nickname, the “Chicken
from Hell,” Anzu wyliei is a
bird-like oviraptorosaurian dinosaur. More specifically, it is a member of the
Caenagnathidae, a poorly understood group of oviraptorosaurs that lived mainly
in North America during the Cretaceous Period. Anzu has distinctive characteristics that are not found in any other
dinosaur, plus other typically oviraptorosaurian features such as a crested
skull and a toothless beak. It grew to a length of at least nine feet and had a
relatively short tail and long, spindly legs with three-toed feet. Its long
arms featured sharp, hooked claws that may been used to catch prey or for
With a name that translates to “Wylie’s feathered demon,”
this dinosaur presents numerous riddles to scientists. Due to the shape of its
toothless jaws, it is unknown if Anzu
was a carnivore, like most other theropod dinosaurs, or if it was a plant eater.
Anzu may even have been an omnivore,
eating both plants and small animals.
Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s two skeletons of Anzu are the most complete oviraptorosaur
specimens yet found in the Western Hemisphere. Museum scientists and their
collaborators are continuing to study the dinosaur’s bones to gain a better
understanding of the species. Because the real fossils are extremely fragile,
more so than those of most other dinosaurs on display, the skeleton on exhibit
is a cast. It is a combination of replicas of the museum’s two real specimens,
which were discovered in the late 1990s in ~66 million-year-old rocks belonging
to the Hell Creek Formation in Harding County, South Dakota. Anzu wyliei was named in 2014 by
Carnegie Museum paleontologist Matt Lamanna and three of his colleagues.
“flexible lizard hiding in plain sight,” was a medium-sized plant-eating dinosaur
that lived about 145–150 million years ago during the late Jurassic Period. Remains
of Camptosaurus have been found in North
America and, according to some paleontologists, in England as well. Although
the Camptosaurus skeleton on display
at Carnegie Museum of Natural History was discovered in 1922, it wasn’t studied
in detail until relatively recently.
On exhibit in Pittsburgh for more than six decades, still
half buried in Jurassic sandstone, the skeleton was fully removed from the rock
in 2005–2006 to transform it into a three-dimensional mount. After the specimen
was completely unearthed, it was discovered to show differences with fossils of
the dinosaur species it was long thought to represent, Camptosaurus dispar. So, in 2008, the skeleton was established as the
type, or name-bearing, specimen of the new species Camptosaurus aphanoecetes by scientists Kenneth Carpenter and
This Camptosaurus skeletonwas excavated by Earl Douglass and his
field crew from rocks belonging to the Morrison Formation in the Carnegie
Quarry at Dinosaur National Monument in Utah. Today it is on display at
Carnegie Museum of Natural History.
Photo Credit: Joshua Franzos for Carnegie Museum of Natural History
Look at this parade under your feet, my son! Forms lovely and lurid, monstrous and sublime! Complexities unfolding, revealing, recombining, blossoming in the dawn gardens of this old world. Here are swimmers, flyers, creepers, and hulks, frolicking and fighting, breeding and feeding, roles accorded for each anatomy. Iguanodon and Deinotherium patrol their terrestrial kingdoms, Pterodactylus and Meganeura own skies with outstretched wings, and ostracoderms and trilobites plow sea-mud fields for detritus and other lowly delicacies. As every age has elapsed, a new one has arrived, burying the old, celebrating the new, until it, too, has become outmoded and passes into that splendid eternity. So, too, dear son, shall you and I.
First off, I have to say that this article exists because of a suggestion by my awesome friend Cabooceratops. It was a pretty good suggestion, since Anorith’s one of those really cool Pokemon with an obscure inspiration.
Anorith line is one of the two fossil Pokemon lines from the third
generation of the series. Much like Gen I, the fossils were not based on
the more commonly known reptiles of the Mesozoic, but on the many
bizarre prehistoric sea creatures. Anorith is specifically based on Anomalocaris. Hit the jump for weirdness.